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Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ

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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/07/24 02:41:08 (permalink)


The Annunciation by Jan van Eyck
held by the National Gallery of Art
in Washington, DC
 
from wikipedia re the Annunciation and Mary's priesthood:
 
[One] of van Eyck's themes, and that of other Early Netherlandish painters, is indicated by the large cope over a dalmatic worn by Gabriel. This would, in a human, mark him as a celebrant or attendant at a High Mass. Mary is facing a table with a book about the right size to be a Gospel Book or Missal upon it, and has her hands raised in a gesture known as the expansis manibus. This is certainly to convey the alarm and uncertainty with which she usually greets the surprising apparition of Gabriel and his news, but is also a gesture used by a priest at certain points of a Mass.[16] The painting has been connected with the Golden Mass ("Missa Aurea"), a liturgical drama, or dramatised Mass, popular in the Netherlands at the time, which included a staging of the Annunciation as the Gospel reading.[17] [18] More generally, this is part of a common theme in Early Netherlandish art, where Mary, as intermediary between the faithful and God, is compared to, or seen as, a priest celebrating Mass. Her personal sacrifice of her son is compared to the ritual sacrifice enacted by the priest in the Mass.

In a surviving extreme example in the Louvre she is shown clearly wearing vestments and celebrating mass at an altar [see above posts 18 and 19]; more often, as here, the comparison is made more subtley.[19]
 
For more about details of painting, see here: Annunciation (van Eyck, Washington)
post edited by Sophie - 2007/07/24 04:03:26
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/07/24 02:41:55 (permalink)


Detail: Gabriel and Mary
 
The Annunciation by Jan van Eyck
held by the National Gallery of Art
in Washington, DC
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/08/20 04:01:10 (permalink)
Dear friends,

In a short article, Mary and the priesthood of all the believers, our Academic Advisor Dr. Wijngaards shows how the common priesthood of all the faithful implies that Holy Orders must be open to both men and women.  Organising his analysis in four key points, Dr. W opens his analysis by pointing out that:

All the baptised, including women, share in Christ’s common priesthood.

Since both men and women equally share in Christ's priesthood through baptism, this means by necessary implication that both women and men also share in Christ's ministerial priesthood through the sacrament of Holy Orders. 

Though I will break down Dr. Wijngaards' article into each of its four key points, the portal to the entire article is available here: http://www.womenpriests.org/mrpriest/m_common.asp Note the links to explore within the article.  Please enjoy and if you have any questions, as always, let me know!

with love and blessings,
~Sophie~
post edited by Sophie - 2007/08/20 04:51:23
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/08/20 04:10:03 (permalink)
 
Dear friends,

As Dr. Wijngaards continues, he shows us that Luke’s Gospel presents Mary as a ‘new priest’ in Christ.  Although -- as Rome stresses repeatedly! -- Mary never performed the eucharistic ministry, she possessed to an eminent degree that integration with Christ's common priesthood which would have made her a natural ministerial priest. This is made especially clear in St. Luke's Gospel where Luke emphasizes the role of women in the Early Church. He obviously envisages an active role for women in the apostolate. In this context, Luke presents Mary as a 'new priest' in Christ ...which means the door is and has been open for women priests. 

Once again, we'll continue our walk through each of Dr. Wijngaards' four key points.  The link to the entire article is here: http://www.womenpriests.org/mrpriest/m_common.asp If you have any questions, please let me know!

with love and blessings,
~Sophie~
post edited by Sophie - 2007/08/20 04:54:28
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/08/20 04:14:31 (permalink)
Dear friends,

In his third key point, Dr. Wijngaards reminds us that Tradition confirms that the common priesthood of the faithful in Mary implies openness to the full ministerial priesthood. 
 
Tradition has regarded Mary as a full priest, including the graces and powers implied in the ministerial priesthood. When confronted with the Church’s ban on women priests, Tradition formulated the solution that Mary possessed the full ministerial priesthood ‘equivalently and eminently’.  Dr. Wijngaards  points out that this Tradition confirms that the common priesthood of the faithful of necessity implies openness to Holy Orders for both men and women. 

The link to Dr. W's article Mary and the Priesthood of all Believers is: http://www.womenpriests.org/mrpriest/m_common.asp 

with love and blessings,
~Sophie~
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/08/20 04:23:50 (permalink)
Dear friends,

The succinct conclusion to Dr. Wijngaards' article Mary and the Priesthood of All Believers?

We need new liberating images of Mary, and of the priesthood.

In making this point, Dr. Wijngaards observes that:
  • an obstacle to our understanding of our Christian ‘priesthood’ and Mary’s exemplary role in it lies in deep-seated cultural fears.  This is brought out very well by Dr. Tina Beattie in her article Mary the Virgin Priest?  
  • traditional depictions of Mary emphasise her submissive obedience. These depictions are heirs to Augustine's argument that if the purest woman in the world was obedient to a husband of lesser virtue, then the quality of a woman's subordination was the index of her chastity. We therefore need truer images of Mary. Kim Power's article Re-imagining Mary at Christmas. provides an illustration of this.
Once again, the article in which Dr. Wijngaards summarises these four points  noted above is available via this link: http://www.womenpriests.org/mrpriest/m_common.asp  Please enjoy and if you have any questions, as always, let me know!

with love and blessings,
~Sophie~
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/08/21 17:05:17 (permalink)
Did the Woman Say

Did the woman say,
When she held him for the first time in the dark dank of a stable,
After the pain and the bleeding and the crying,
"This is my body, this is my blood"?

Did the woman say,
When she held him for the last time in the dark rain on a hilltop,
After the pain and the bleeding and the dying,
"This is my body, this is my blood"?

Well that she said it to him then,
For dry old men,
Brocaded robes belying barrenness,
Ordain that she not say it for him now.

-Frances Croake Franck
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/09/01 02:34:40 (permalink)
Beads to Unite Believers on Rosary Day
Marian Devotion on the Rise, Says Scholar


MEXICO CITY, AUG. 31, 2007 - A group of Catholics in Mexico City are inviting all religious and lay movements to join them Oct. 7 for Worldwide Rosary Day.

The main event will be hosted at the Basilica of Our Lay of Guadalupe in Mexico City, but organizers are asking all interested "religious and lay movements from around the world to organize massive rosaries, joining in this Worldwide Day 2007, in as many locations and countries as possible."

Guillermo Estévez Alverde, one of the organizers of the event, said: "We have already celebrated 11 years of this work and, with our mother's blessing, the Most Holy Virgin Mary, year after year the number of people and countries who join in praying the rosary grows.

"Every year more people and more countries join in to pray the rosary."

Devotion to the rosary, both publicly and privately, is on the rise, claims Mark Miravalle, professor of Mariology at the Franciscan University of Steubenville.

The Mariologist told ZENIT that one reason for the resurgence is that we live in troubled times: "Moral degeneration, terrorism and war, and even natural disasters, are leading people to look upward for solutions to global problems that appear beyond human control or remedy.

"Like the early Church under persecution, more people are turning to Mary, our advocate, for motherly protection, grace, and courage in these times of moral and global crisis."

Traditional

Also, earlier this year on May 19, Los Angeles hosted the first "Rosary Bowl." The event, hosted at the site of the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, drew 60,000 to pray the traditional prayer of the Virgin Mary.

Estévez Alverde said that the organizers of the Worldwide Day of the Rosary don't keep tabs on the specific numbers of participants: "We don't know, and don't want to know how many people unite. That is for us to know in heaven, but after the event, every year, we receive information of rosary events that surprise us."

He said that one year a group in Mexico City gathered some 45,000 people to pray the rosary in a bull-fighting ring.

Another group located in a small fishing village in Alaska gathered their divided families to pray the rosary, "asking in petitions for the unity of families. They really felt that this helped them in unity."

Decrease

Miravalle said that during the years immediately following the Second Vatican Council, there was a decrease in Marian devotions.

"This was due to the incorrect perspective that the council called for a de-emphasis on the Mother of Jesus and her roles," he said. "Nonetheless, this misconception had its negative theological and pastoral effects, and led to a decrease in several Marian devotions that had been generously practiced in the Church."

"The pontificate of Pope John Paul II served as a dynamic corrective to this downward tendency," Miravalle continued.

"His teaching and his person," he added, "radiated a contagious love of Our Lady, and this reintroduced a higher Mariology and a more generous Marian devotion into the Church's theological and pastoral life."

Miravalle said: "Benedict XVI and his magisterium is continuing this Marian renewal in both teaching and praxis.

"In a recent audience -- Aug. 22 -- our Holy Father called young people to 'place your lives and each of your projects under the maternal protection of the one who gave the world its savior.'

"The Pope's words and teachings about Our Lady echo throughout the Catholic world, and sustain this contemporary Marian renaissance of truth and love."

"People in general and families in particular are returning to the rosary as a spiritually and historically proven prayer for Christian holiness and for protection," he said. "John Paul II prayed 15 decades of the rosary every day of his pontificate. More families today are making time for the daily rosary because of the spiritual peace they find, and the spiritual protection they need."

© Innovative Media, Inc.
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/09/01 02:37:30 (permalink)
Benedict XVI's Homily on the Assumption
"Take Heart, It Is Love That Wins in the End!"

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, AUG. 25, 2007 (Zenit.org).- Here is a Vatican translation of the homily Benedict XVI delivered Aug. 15, solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, at St. Thomas of Villanova Parish in Castel Gandolfo.

* * *

HOLY MASS ON THE SOLEMNITY
OF THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY
HOMILY OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI
St. Thomas of Villanova Parish, Castel Gandolfo
Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

In his great work "De Civitate Dei," St Augustine says once that the whole of human history, the history of the world, is a struggle between two loves: love of God to the point of losing oneself, of total self-giving, and love of oneself to the point of despising God, of hating others. This same interpretation of history as a struggle between two loves, between love and selfishness, also appears in the reading from the Book of Revelation that we have just heard.

Here, these two loves appear in two great figures. First of all, there is the immensely strong, red dragon with a striking and disturbing manifestation of power without grace, without love, of absolute selfishness, terror and violence.

At the time when St John wrote the Book of Revelation, this dragon represented for him the power of the anti-Christian Roman Emperors, from Nero to Domitian. This power seemed boundless; the military, political and propagandist power of the Roman Empire was such that before it, faith, the Church, appeared as a defenceless woman with no chance of survival and even less of victory.

Who could stand up to this omnipresent force that seemed capable of achieving everything? Yet, we know that in the end it was the defenceless woman who won and not egoism or hatred; the love of God triumphed and the Roman Empire was opened to the Christian faith.

The words of Sacred Scripture always transcend the period in history. Thus, not only does this dragon suggest the anti-Christian power of the persecutors of the Church of that time, but also anti-Christian dictatorships of all periods.

We see this power, the force of the red dragon, brought into existence once again in the great dictatorships of the last century: the Nazi dictatorship and the dictatorship of Stalin monopolized all the power, penetrated every corner, the very last corner. It seemed impossible in the long term that faith could survive in the face of this dragon that was so powerful, that could not wait to devour God become a Child, as well as the woman, the Church. But also in this case, in the end love was stronger than hate.

Today too, the dragon exists in new and different ways. It exists in the form of materialistic ideologies that tell us it is absurd to think of God; it is absurd to observe God's commandments: they are a leftover from a time past. Life is only worth living for its own sake. Take everything we can get in this brief moment of life. Consumerism, selfishness and entertainment alone are worthwhile. This is life. This is how we must live. And once again, it seems absurd, impossible, to oppose this dominant mindset with all its media and propagandist power. Today too, it seems impossible to imagine a God who created man and made himself a Child and who was to be the true ruler of the world.

Even now, this dragon appears invincible, but it is still true today that God is stronger than the dragon, that it is love which conquers rather than selfishness.

Having thus considered the various historical forms of the dragon, let us now look at the other image: the woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, surrounded by 12 stars. This is also a multidimensional image.

Without any doubt, a first meaning is that it is Our Lady, Mary, clothed with the sun, that is, with God, totally; Mary who lives totally in God, surrounded and penetrated by God's light. Surrounded by the 12 stars, that is, by the 12 tribes of Israel, by the whole People of God, by the whole Communion of Saints; and at her feet, the moon, the image of death and mortality.

Mary has left death behind her; she is totally clothed in life, she is taken up body and soul into God's glory and thus, placed in glory after overcoming death, she says to us: Take heart, it is love that wins in the end!

The message of my life was: I am the handmaid of God, my life has been a gift of myself to God and my neighbour. And this life of service now arrives in real life. May you too have trust and have the courage to live like this, countering all the threats of the dragon.

This is the first meaning of the woman whom Mary succeeded in being. The "woman clothed with the sun" is the great sign of the victory of love, of the victory of goodness, of the victory of God; a great sign of consolation.

Yet, this woman who suffered, who had to flee, who gave birth with cries of anguish, is also the Church, the pilgrim Church of all times. In all generations she has to give birth to Christ anew, to bring him very painfully into the world, with great suffering. Persecuted in all ages, it is almost as if, pursued by the dragon, she had gone to live in the wilderness.

However, in all ages, the Church, the People of God, also lives by the light of God and as the Gospel says is nourished by God, nourishing herself with the Bread of the Holy Eucharist. Thus, in all the trials in the various situations of the Church through the ages in different parts of the world, she wins through suffering. And she is the presence, the guarantee of God's love against all the ideologies of hatred and selfishness.

We see of course that today too the dragon wants to devour God who made himself a Child. Do not fear for this seemingly frail God; the fight has already been won. Today too, this weak God is strong: he is true strength.

Thus, the Feast of the Assumption is an invitation to trust in God and also to imitate Mary in what she herself said: Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; I put myself at the Lord's disposal.

This is the lesson: one should travel on one's own road; one should give life and not take it. And precisely in this way each one is on the journey of love which is the loss of self, but this losing of oneself is in fact the only way to truly find oneself, to find true life.

Let us look to Mary, taken up into Heaven. Let us be encouraged to celebrate the joyful feast with faith: God wins. Faith, which seems weak, is the true force of the world. Love is stronger than hate.

And let us say with Elizabeth: Blessed are you among women. Let us pray to you with all the Church: Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

© Copyright 2007 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/09/01 02:55:48 (permalink)
On Mary's Glorification

VATICAN CITY, AUG. 24, 2007 (Zenit.org).- Here is a Vatican translation of the address Benedict XVI delivered Aug. 15, the solemnity of the Assumption, before reciting the midday Angelus with several thousand people gathered at Castel Gandolfo.

* * *

SOLEMNITY OF THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY
BENEDICT XVI
ANGELUS

Papal Summer Residence, Castel Gandolfo
Wednesday, 15 August 2007

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Today, we are celebrating the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is an ancient feast deeply rooted in Sacred Scripture: indeed, it presents the Virgin Mary closely united to her divine Son and ever supportive of him.

Mother and Son appear closely bound in the fight against the infernal enemy until they completely defeat him. This victory is expressed in particular in overcoming sin and death, that is, in triumphing over the enemies which St Paul always presents as connected (cf. Rom 5: 12, 15-21; I Cor 15: 21-26).

Therefore, just as Christ's glorious Resurrection was the definitive sign of this victory, so Mary's glorification in her virginal body is the ultimate confirmation of her total solidarity with the Son, both in the conflict and in victory.

The Servant of God Pope Pius XII interpreted the deep theological meaning of this mystery on 1 November 1950 when he pronounced the solemn Dogmatic Definition of this Marian privilege.

He declared: "Hence, the revered Mother of God, from all eternity joined in a hidden way with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination, immaculate in her conception, a most perfect virgin in her divine motherhood, the noble associate of the divine Redeemer who has won a complete triumph over sin and its consequences, finally obtained, as the supreme culmination of her privileges, that she should be preserved free from the corruption of the tomb and that, like her own Son, having overcome death, she might be taken up body and soul to the glory of Heaven where, as Queen, she sits in splendour at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages" (Apostolic Constitution "Munificentissimus Deus": AAS 42, [1 November 1950]).

Dear brothers and sisters, after being taken up into Heaven, Mary did not distance herself from us but continues to be even closer to us and her light shines on our lives and on the history of all humanity. Attracted by the heavenly brightness of the Mother of the Redeemer, let us turn with trust to the One who looks upon us and protects us from on high.

We all need her help and comfort to face the trials and challenges of daily life; we need to feel that she is our mother and sister in the concrete situations of our lives.

And so that we too may one day be able to share in her same destiny, let us imitate her now in her meek following of Christ and her generous service to the brethren. This is the only way to have a foretaste, already on our earthly pilgrimage, of the joy and peace which those who reach the immortal destination of Paradise live to the full.

After the Angelus:

I offer a warm welcome to the English-speaking visitors gathered for this Angelus prayer on the Solemnity of the Assumption of Our Lady. May the example and prayers of Mary, Queen of Heaven, inspire and sustain us on our pilgrimage of faith, that we too may attain the glory of the Resurrection and the fulfilment of our hope in her Son's promises. Upon you and your families I invoke the Lord's richest blessings.
I wish you all a good Feast of the Assumption!

© Copyright 2007 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/10/17 18:48:35 (permalink)
Modeling Mary: Images of Theotokos 
 

 
Madonna of Port Lligat, Dali 1949
 
The cult of Mary is a surprisingly late development in Christianity. Though central to Roman Catholicism and highly valued among many Anglicans, Marian devotion did not flower until the fourth century CE. Accompanied by a visual feast of Marian art and symbols, these two lectures will deconstruct and reconstruct the image of Mary, exploring historical and cultural forces that influenced the rise of veneration of the mother of Jesus and the meaning of Mary for contemporary seekers.

When: 
Wednesdays November 7 and 14, 2007
6:30 to 8 PM
McGehee Conference Room
Christ Church Cathedral
Houston, Texas

Admission:  Free
 
Presenter:
Pamela Stockton is currently President of Brigid's Place and editor of the Women's Journal. In 2006 she completed a Master of Theological Studies degree and Women's Studies Certificate at Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University. 

Brigid’s Place, Christ Church (Episcopal)Cathedral,
1117 Texas Avenue
Houston, Texas
77002
Telephone: 713.590.3333
Web address:
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/03 15:42:17 (permalink)
Dear friends,

Tradition shows a latent thread evidence of a widespread centuries long continuous devotion to Mary as a priest. Who were some of the saints, bishops, theologians and spiritual authors who have written about Mary’s priesthood ? We will learn that the devotion appears in the early Church and continues on throughout our journey as a Church.  Dr. Wijngaards observes that an increase in testimonies about Mary as priest in later centuries does not arise so much from growth in the devotion as it does from the fact that the testimonies from earlier times are much more difficult to obtain.

Saint Germanus of Constantinople is one of the early writers we know about.  In terms of profile, Germanus was Senator at Constantinople and Bishop of Cyzicus.  He became the Patriarch of Constantinople in 715. He is famous for  his ardent defense of the veneration of icons against the iconoclasts and their mentor, emperor Leo the Isaurian.  Several of his writings have survived.  For instance, his homelies have been published in the Patrologiae Cursus. Series Graeca (PG), Migne, Paris 1857-1866, vol. 98. 
 
Catholics celebrate his memorial on May 12.

 
St. Germanus of Constantinople
 
Through Germanus's writings, we learn about his devotion to Mary as priest. 
 
Mary mediates in redemption

You are the mother of true life. You are leaven of the reformation of Adam. You are the freedom from the shame of Eve . . . . There is no limit to your help.
 
If you did not lead the way, no one would become spiritual, no one would adore God in truth; for then did humankind become spiritual, when you, Theotokos, were made the dwelling of the Holy Spirit. No human being is filled with the knowledge of God except through you, all-holy one; no human being is saved except through you, Theotokos; no human being is freed from dangers except through you, virgin and mother; no human being is redeemed, except through you, Mother of God...

from Homily on the Assumption, PG 98, cols. 349A-B.
 
Mary intercedes for sinners

But you, having maternal power with God, can obtain abundant forgiveness even for the greatest sinners. For he can never fail to hear you, because God obeys you through and in all things, as his true Mother.

. . . . You turn away the just threat and the sentence of damnation, because you love the Christians . . . . Therefore, the Christian people trustfully turn to you, o refuge of sinners.

from Homily on the Assumption, PG 98, cols. 352A-B.
 
Mary sanctified the Holy of Holies

[Holy of Holies] . . . . receive her who, in turn, will receive the spiritual and incomprehensible fire; give hospitality to her who will give hospitality to him who is the Son of God and Word of the Father.

. . . . Today she who will receive the Holy of Holies, that is the Christ, through the sanctification of the Holy Spirit is, through an even greater sanctification, placed in the Holy of Holies with holiness and majesty.

[The Virgin is] . . . spiritual altar of the divine victim, altar consecrated and dedicated to God.

from First Homily on the Presentation, PG 98, cols. 293C, 300, 301.
 
Though a woman, Mary lived where only priests may enter

There where only the High Priest may enter, and then rarely: only once a year, it is there in this holy sanctuary of grace that Mary is offered to stay there indefinitely. Who has ever heard anything similar? Who has ever seen or heard, now or formerly, that a woman was introduced into the intimacy of the Holy of Holies, and that it was in this place, almost inaccessible even to men, that she lived and ate. Is this not a striking demonstration of the strange magnificence of which her womb would be the object? Is it not a manifest sign, a irrefutable proof?

[The Virgin] direct the governings of the ecclesiastical hierarchy. She vests priests with justice and with the joy of a glorious, irreproachable and immaculate faith.

[Mary is] . . . the fulfilment of the Lord’s [Old Testament] laws . . . . the seal on his Covenant . . . . the end of his plans . . . . the achievement of his mysteries.

from Second Homily on the Presentation, PG 98, cols. 309C, 307D, 316B.
 
We will continue with an exploration of this latent tradition.  In our thread devoted to 'Tradition,' I will begin an exploration that will help us understand exactly what a 'latent tradition' and how it fits into the picture.
 
Once I have it posted, I will provide a link here.  If you have any questions, please let me know.
 
with love and blessings,
 
~Sophie~
 
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/03 16:03:25 (permalink)
Dear friends,

From the Middle Ages, we hear the voice of St. Bernard of Clairvaux. Founder of the Abbey of Clairvaux, Bernard was a prolific preacher and writer who had an enormous influence on his contemporaries. He was canonised in 1174, and declared a Doctor of the Church in 1830.



Bernard of Clairvaux,
in a medieval illuminated manuscript
(click on image to enlarge.)

Though he never literally applied the title ‘priest’ to Mary, he attributed sacrificial actions to her. The text quoted below (translated from the Latin by Dr. Wijngaards) helped to spark off the devotion to Mary Priest.




O consecrated Virgin, offer your son and present to the Lord the blessed fruit of your womb. Offer for our reconciliation to all, this holy victim, agreeable to God. The Father will fully accept this new sacrifice, this precious oblation (victim) of whom he himself has said: “This is my well beloved Son in whom I have put my love” (Mt 3, 7).

- This text presupposes familiarity with the Gospel text of the Presentation of Christ.

In ‘In Purificatione Mariae’, Sermo III, in Sancti Bernardi Opera Omnia, ed. J. Mabillon, Paris 1982, p. 370 col. b we read from St. Bernard:




But this offering, my brothers, may seem rather easy to you since the victim offered to the Lord is redeemed by birds, and therefore released. The time will come when this victim will no longer be offered in the Temple, nor in the arms of Simeon, but outside the city and in the arms of the cross. The time will come when the victim will not be redeemed by anything else, but when it will redeem others by the price of its blood. Then it will be the evening sacrifice. Now we are still at the sacrifice of the morning. This one, surely, is more pleasant; the other one will be more complete. The word of prophecy comes through: “He has been sacrificed because he has wanted it” (Is 52,7). If he is offered today [at the Presentation], in fact, this is not because he needs to be offered, nor that he falls under the law, but because he himself wanted it. Also on the cross he was offered, not because he deserved it, neither because the Jews could do it, but because he wanted it himself.

In Commentary by D. Nogues, Mariologie de S. Bernard, Paris 1935, p. 150, we read the following observation:




St. Bernard calls Mary ‘consecrated’ because she was consecrated to the priestly function of offering sacrifice . . . .Mary carries in herself a priestly soul of the highest degree...Her soul was bathed through the anointing of the Holy Spirit who covered her with his shadow. In this way a true royal and mystical priesthood was conferred on her.... Mary became for Jesus both priest and altar, the priest and the altar of this offering of the lamb of God anticipated on the day of her purification.



More to follow from other writers!  If you have any questions, please let me know.

with love and blessings,

~Sophie~

* These citations are found in our library document, Bernard of Clairvaux, found here: http://www.womenpriests.org/mrpriest/bernard1.asp
 
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/03 17:23:34 (permalink)
 
 
 
 
 
 
Dear friends,

Our exploration of what is a 'latent Tradition' begins here: RE: Women Priests as Viewed from Tradition
 
Please join us!
 
with love and blessings,
 
~Sophie~
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/21 04:28:41 (permalink)
FEAST OF THE Entrance into The temple oF Our Most holy Lady The Theotokos

November 21



Introduction

The Feast of the Entrance into the Temple of Our Most Holy Lady the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary is celebrated on November 21 each year. The Feast commemorates when as a young child, the Virgin Mary entered the Temple in Jerusalem.

Introduction

The birth and early life of the Virgin Mary is not recorded in the Gospels or other books of the New Testament, however this information can be found in a work dating from the second century known as the Book of James or Protevangelion.

When Mary was three years old, Joachim and Anna decided that the time had come to fulfill their promise and to offer her to the Lord. Joachim gathered the young girls of the neighborhood to form an escort, and he made them go in front of Mary, carrying torches. Captivated by the torches, the young child followed joyfully to the Temple, not once looking back at her parents nor weeping as she was parted from them.

The holy Virgin ran toward the Temple, overtaking her attendant maidens and threw herself into the arms of the High Priest Zacharias, who was waiting for her at the gate of the Temple with the elders. Zacharias blessed her saying, "It is in you that He has glorified your name in every generation. It is in you that He will reveal the Redemption that He has prepared for His people in the last days."

Then, Zacharias brought the child into the Holy of Holies—a place where only the High Priest was permitted to enter once a year on the Day of Atonement. He placed her on the steps of the altar, and the grace of the Lord descended upon her. She arose and expressed her joy in a dance as wonder seized all who saw this happen.

The Virgin Mary dwelt in the Temple for nine years until, reaching an age for marriage, she was taken from the Temple by the priests and elders and entrusted to Joseph as the guardian of her virginity.

The Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple signifies her total dedication to God and her readiness for her future vocation as the Mother of the Incarnate Lord. This is a feast of anticipation. As honor is shown to Mary, the faithful are called to look forward to the Incarnation of Christ, celebrated in a little more than a month by the Feast of the Nativity on December 25.

Icon of the Feast

The icon of the feast tells the story of Mary's entry into the Temple. The High Priest, Zacharias (1), is in his priestly robes standing on the step of the Temple. His arms are outstretched, ready to greet and receive the Virgin. Mary is shown as a small child, standing before Zacharias with her arms reaching up to him (2).



1. The High Priest, Zacharias receives the
Theotokos at the steps of the Temple (detail).


2. The Theotokos as a small child being
received by the High Priest, Zacharias (detail).

In some icons the young maidens (3) who served as her escort are depicted standing behind her. Also, we see her parents, Joachim and Anna (4), offering their child to God and His divine service.


3. Young maidens gathered by Joachim
to form an escort for the Theotokos (detail).


4. Joachim and Anna, parents of the Theotokos (detail).
 
In the upper center portion of the icon, the Virgin is seated on the steps of the Holy of Holies. An angel is there, attending to the one chosen by God to bring the Savior into the world.



5. An Angel of the Lord attends to the
Theotokos in the Holy of Holies (detail).

Orthodox Christian Celebration of the Feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos

The Feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos is celebrated with the Divine Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom which is conducted on the morning of the Feast and preceded by a Matins (Orthros) service. A Great Vespers is conducted on the evening before the day of the Feast. Scripture readings for the Feast are the following:

At Vespers: Exodus 40:1-5, 9-10, 16, 34-35; I Kings 7:51, 8:1, 3-4, 6-7, 9-11; Ezekiel 43:27—44:4.
At the Matins: Luke 1:39-49, 56.
At the Divine Liturgy: Hebrews 9:1-7; Luke 10:38-42; 11:27-28.

Hymns of the Feast

Apolytikion (Fourth Tone)

Today is the prelude of God's pleasure and the proclamation of man's salvation. The Virgin is clearly made manifest in the temple of God and foretells Christ to all. Let us also cry out to her with mighty voice, "Hail, fulfillment of the Creator's dispensation."

Kontakion (Fourth Tone)

Today, the most pure temple of the Savior, the precious bridal chamber and Virgin, the sacred treasure of God, enters the house of the Lord, bringing the grace of the Divine Spirit. The Angels of God praise her. She is the heavenly tabernacle.

Resources

  • Festival Icons for the Christian Year by John Baggley (Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir's Seminary Press, 2000), pp. 16-20
  • The Festal Menaion. Translated by Mother Mary (South Canaan, PA: St. Tikhon’s Seminary Press, 1969) pp. 51-52
  • The Incarnate God: The Feasts of Jesus Christ and the Virgin Mary, Catherine Aslanoff, editor and Paul Meyendorff, translator (Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1995)
  • The Synaxarion: The Lives of the Saints of the Orthodox Church, Vol. 2, compiled by Hieromonk Makarios of Simonos Petra and translated from the French by Christopher Hookway (Chalkidike, Greece: Holy Convent of the Annunciation of Our Lady, 1999) pp. 193-196.

http://www.goarch.org/en/special/listen_learn_share/vmpresentation/learn/index.asp?printit=yes
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/21 04:55:48 (permalink)
The Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple (7/98)
 
November 21
A Meditation
by Mary Grace Ritchey
[Melkite Greek Catholic Church]



On the first Sunday of Lent, the Sunday of Orthodoxy, the kontakion reminds us of the reason we venerate the Virgin Mary and why Icons of Christ and the saints can be used: The infinite word of God became circumscribed when He was incarnate in you, O Mother of God. He restored our corrupt image to its former beauty by joining it to the divine splendor. Wherefore we now proclaim our salvation and make it known by word and deed.

Mary was the first to be restored to the image and likeness of God and this feast points out by word ("the icon corresponds entirely to the ‘word’ of scripture"-p.10 Theology of the Icon by L. Ouspensky) and deed (the prayers of Liturgy) some explicit instances of this story.

The origin of this feast can be found in the Protevangelion of James. Mary was brought to the Temple by Joachim and Anne at the age of three to be consecrated to the service of God. Preceded by young girls with lighted candles ( often shown in this icon), she entered into the Holy of Holies. The account tells that Mary danced before the Ark of the Covenant. In Archbishop Raya’s book Theotokos (p. 96) he says:



We are totally convinced that Mary’s supreme dignity as future Bearer of God merits her not only to enter the Temple but to penetrate to the most sacred place of the Temple, the "Holy of Holies." This part of the temple is called the "Holy of Holies" because it contained the "Shekhina," the glory of God, with the Manna, the Rod of Aaron, and the Tablets of the Ten Commandments. Mary was no mere receptacle of signs and symbols, as was the Temple. She was more sacred and holier because she was to contain Glory Himself . . . (p. 96)

The theme of the feast and the Icon of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple is that this historic event marks the end of the physical Temple of the Old testament and is the beginning of the salvation plan for all humanity. Mary is the new Temple or tabernacle of the presence of God! She is the first to be a "Temple of the Holy Spirit" and at Great Vespers the cantor chants:



Today let us, the faithful, dance for joy, singing to the Lord with Psalms and hymns, venerating His hollowed Tabernacle, the living Ark, that contained the Word who cannot be contained. For she, a young child in the flesh, is offered in wondrous fashion to the Lord, and with rejoicing Zacharias the Great High Priest receives her as the dwelling of God. (P. 166 The Festal Menaion)

In the reading from Exodus (40: 1-5, 9-10, 16, 34-35) we are reminded that the Israelites were led by the Tent or Tabernacle of the presence of God which contained the Ark of the Covenant containing the Manna, the Rod of Aaron and the Ten Commandments. The cloud surrounding it during the day and the pillar of fire by night signified the presence of God with the Israelites, the people of the one, true God. This portable Temple was replaced by the Temple built by Solomon. The Temple Mary enters is the rebuilt Temple of Zorobabel which no longer contained these five things found in Solomon’s temple:



Fire from on high, the Oil of anointment, the Ark, the Holy Spirit, the Urim and the Thummin (p. 153 The Meaning of Icons by L. Ouspensky and V. Lossky).

At Orthros (Matins) the Magnificat is replaced by these words:



Beholding the entry of the All-Pure, the angels were struck with amazement, seeing how the Virgin entered into the Holy of Holies (p. 190 Menaion ).


No one entered the Holy of Holies except the High Priest and only once a year. Yet Zacharias does not prevent Mary from entering the Holy of Holies. This mystery of the incarnation, hidden from the angelic orders, is acknowledged by the one who is to be the father of John the Baptist, Zacharias. Mary enters into the Temple to prepare herself to later become the Temple of the body of Christ and we are led to meditate on the mystery of the Church, the Body of Christ, and the Eucharist! The Theotokos (God-bearer) prepares to receive the humanity of Christ. Mary is truly the first Christian (Christian means Christ-bearer) and our model.

The scene in the icon is the inner court of the Temple. (The Temple was divided into three courts, the court of the people which was divided into men and women, the court of the priests and the Holy of Holies.)

Zacharias stands on the steps and Mary stretches her hands toward him. In some icons Mary is seen a second time in the Holy of Holies being assisted by an angel. She is to be nourished by "heavenly bread." The virgin does not look like a child except in size because already she is a "mature" or perfect person. The background shows other temple buildings.

The kontakion of the feast states:



The All-pure Temple of the Saviour, the precious Bridal Chamber and Virgin, the sacred treasure of the glory of God, is led today into the house of the Lord, and with her she brings the grace of the divine Spirit. Of her God’s angels sing in praise: "She is indeed the heavenly Tabernacle." (P. 195 Menaion)

The Epistle, Hebrews 9: 1-7, describes the Tabernacle of the old covenant. The Gospel, Luke 10: 38-42; 11: 27-28, speaks of Martha and Mary. Mary is the model of "listener" of the Word of God. It also contains the mysterious words concerning the Mother of God "Blessed are they that hear the word of God and keep it." Thomas Hopko in Volume III, The Orthodox Faith says



This ‘glory of the Lord’ is referred to the Mother of Christ (see also Ezekiel 43: 27-44:4) and it ‘fills’ her and all people after her who ‘hear the word of God and keep it’ as the Gospel of the festal liturgy proclaims. (P. 143)


All icons are meditation on and symbol of the reality of the incarnation of Christ and the consequences of His incarnation for humanity. Mary, who is "full of grace" by reason that "the Lord is with you" is Temple of the Holy Spirit. Likewise, our gift from God at Chrismation is the seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit into our own senses. Mary is the example of each individual’s possible theosis. We, too, are tabernacles of the Lord.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

  • Mother Mary, The Festal Menaion, London, Faber and Faber, 191977.
  • Ouspensky, Leonid, Theology of the Icon, St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, Crestwood, NY, 1978.
  • Raya, Joseph Archbishop, Theotokos, Madonna House Publications, Combermere,Ontario, Canada, 1995.
  • The Lost books of the Bible and the forgotten books of Eden, World Bible Publishers, Inc., 1926-1927. (Contains the Protevangelion of James)
  • Ouspensky, Leonid and Vladimir Lossky, The Meaning of Icons, St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, Crestwood, NY, 1982.
  • Hopko, Thomas, The Orthodox Faith, Volume III, The Department of Religious Education, The Orthodox Church in America, New York, 1979.

http://www.melkite.org/Feast2.html
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/21 16:45:58 (permalink)
Since you women have already been excommunicated and ceased communion with Rome, I can only pity you. If only you could spent your time and energy more constructively like combatting the growing liturgical abuses or growing protestantization of the Mass - Pizza Masses etc, the Church would have been a better place. Hiaz
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/21 18:52:01 (permalink)
Do you know something that I don't know about myself?  I've never ever been considered a candidate for excommunication. Where did you get that idea?  And as far as being out of communion with Rome?  What???? Who is feeding you this stuff?
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/21 21:34:39 (permalink)
  This website is dedicated to making the women ordination LEGAL .   
 
 It is not illegal at all to study or read the bible, to study and discuss Canon laws, to study and discuss Papal documents, to study and discuss the Roman Catholic Catechism or discuss the books written by the pope and theologians
 
No one is being excommunicated for studying and thinking and helping reform the church.
 
  It is far more destructive to the church to remain in ignorance and error by not thoroughly studying this.
 
  It is far more destructive for the children, men and women of our Roman Catholic Church to be apathetic and ignorant of the issues that affect us. Pedophile abuse of children will continue unabated unless we help the church correct this great error of prohibiting women from being ordained.
 
Why have a church system that continues to lead to such a culture of abuse of children and women and a climate of spiritual poverty and ignorance?  Women ought to be ordained as deacons and priests in the Roman Catholic Church.
 
No one is getting excommunicated for reading and studying the Roman Catholic religion and the issues that affect the laity and clergy and women and children.
 
 
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RE: Mary: Model Priest, The First Priest After Christ 2007/11/21 21:41:10 (permalink)
  You confuse this site with something that it is not.   This is about getting LEGAL ordination of women in the REGULAR Roman Catholic Church.
 
Please take a moment to actually LOOK at this website as you are absolutely incorrect in thinking anyone is "excommunicated".
 
  Saying we are "we women" is silly too,  I am a male high school student who has a girlfriend who would be a wonderful Roman Catholic priest or deacon if my crazy church would only get a true to Jesus policy change and ordain women.   Get a grip on reality and before you type on a site you should see what the site is.  This is for trying to help the church fix itself and let women too be priests in it.
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